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LIFE funding for private land conservation


On 13 May 2020, the International Land Conservation Network (ILCN) and the European Land Conservation Network (ELCN) organised a webinar on using EU LIFE funding for private land conservation. The webinar attracted 191 attendees and provided a useful resource for private landowners and conservationists working together with private landowners in their preparations for a LIFE project proposal.

The webinar started with a short introduction by moderator Tilmann Disselhoff on LIFE ELCN, a LIFE preparatory project funded project that aims to further private land conservation in Europe. The ELCN has recently been fully integrated into Eurosite. Tilmann was then followed by Angelo Salsi, Head of Unit of the LIFE Programme at the Executive Agency for Small and Medium Enterprises (EASME).

Angelo kicked off the webinar with an introduction to the LIFE Programme, and then gave an overview of how private land conservation has been funded by this programme until today.  He then shared his thoughts on the state of play of the two current LIFE projects dealing with private land conservation (LIFE ELCN and LIFE Land is Forever) and presented his ideas about possible future projects and proposals on this topic, ending by encouraging people to continue to send in their applications on this topic.

Stefano Picchi – longtime LIFE expert and professor for conservation finance at Bologna University, talked about the practical aspects of developing, applying for and managing LIFE Projects. He provided interesting tips, insights and examples of pitfalls for these processes. He furthermore talked about the roles that private landowners and their organisations can take up in LIFE projects.

The webinar ended with a lively and interactive Q & A session about a variety of topics, such as the potenial scope and techincal ramifications of LIFE projects dealing with private land conservation, the relationship of LIFE to other EU financing mechanisms, and – more generally – the outlook for private land conservation and its role vis-a-vis the EU biodiversity policies in the next years. To see the full webinar, please go here.